Friday, 27 June 2008

Henley in the morning

. Well the result went pretty much as expected before I went to bed. My gut feeling is to follow what I felt last night and lean to feeling the result is not a good one. I don't think it is hard to see why when our swing of 1.7% was less than the BNP's share of the vote (3.6%), this is a very sobering statistic to me. So, what did Henley show us?? It showed us that the Labour vote is transferring itself not mainly to one party; that some are making the switch to the Conservatives and us but others are going to smaller parties like the Greens and the BNP.

I wouldn't expect this trend to last into a general election when I would expect the BNP and similar such parties to fade as people make a more determined and tactical effort to kick the government out in the best way possible, by voting for the second party in a given seat. The smaller parties were the real winners of the night and the Greens now have a serious opportunity to make headway as a party by coming a credible second to David Davis.

The oppositional mood to the government is disparate and not very focused (it wasn't an amazing result for the Tories either). They would have been expecting certainly not to lose 5,000 votes on the last time out; given the strong national mood in their favour. Also, this follows the latest You Gov poll which shows a slight ebbing in the tide. The continuation of the expenses scandal will have maybe placed a slight doubt in peoples minds about the credibility of the 'change' brought about by David Cameron.

As for the government itself...it is as dead as the proverbial dodo. It is visibly decomposing in office. At the Blog Nation event, the editor of Comment is Free asked if we should be talking about 'saving the Labour government' and the short answer has to be no, no and thrice no. For the Liberal Democrats the task is proving ourselves as an opposition to both this Labour government and the next Conservative one; for the broader liberal/left the task is cohering that same opposition behind one banner.

1 comment:

cassandra said...

The BNP vote isn't tactical, for many indiginous poor people they are becoming the Party of choice.

The Lib/Lab merger could be a reality sooner than you think.